Editorial: Firm letter

POSTED: 02/12/13 12:09 PM

Not all is well in the relationship between St. Maarten and its neighbors Saba and Statia we learn from the firm letter Kingdom Relations Minister Ronald Plasterk.

Our government is digging in its heels on several fronts: the turnover tax on exports to our neighbors, airport tax on Winair flights, the operation of the helicopter for medical emergencies and the landing permit for a fiber optic cable.

The underlying threat in Plasterk’s letter is clear: the Dutch government values good relationships with its Kingdom partners but if St. Maarten wants to play hardball it should not be surprised to find out that there is a price to pay further down the road.

Instead of dragging its heels, our government would be wise to take some clear decisions on these issues  instead of dragging its feet and making promises it does not intend to keep. Whatever those political choices may be, at least they will show everybody where the country stands.

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